Orange County High Point Trip Report

Occoneechee Mtn (860+ ft)

Date: November 23, 2002
Author: Carl Mills

Since this high point is in a state park now, directions are published on the web here.

The parking area is literally a few feet from a junction of two interstate highways (40 and 85), but the directions require 4 turns from interstate 85. From Interstate 85, follow exit 164 north onto Churton Street, then left on Mayo Street, then left on Orange Grove Road, and right on Virginia Cates Road.

From the parking area, follow the trail uphill to the summit. Forest lookout and communications towers are on the left side of the trail, and the benchmark is on a boulder on the right side.

This is not a high point for seeking splendid seclusion. With two highways nearby, there is almost constant truck noise. It is likely to be one of the most heavily visited high points in the Tarheel state, since the Raleigh News and Observer recently featured it in an outdoor article, identifying the high point of the combined 3-county Research Triange metropolis. Also, there are no orange trees on Orange Grove Road, or elsewhere in the county.